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News in brief: June 2024

This month's top news in brief stories

Ccear cell kidney cancer light micrograph -CREDIT - SPlibrary

Translational medicine 

Late scientist's work could yield new treatments

Some of the final work of a late University of Virginia School of Medicine scientist has opened the door for life-saving new treatments for solid cancer tumours, including breast cancer, lung cancer and melanoma. Prior to his sudden death in 2016, John Herr had been investigating the possibility research into the SAS1B protein could lead to “broad and profound” new treatments for multiple cancers, many of which are very difficult to treat. A new paper reports that SAS1B is a novel cancer-oocyte antigen with cell surface expression restricted to cancer cells. In vitro, it is an effective target for antibody-mediated cancer cell lysis. Herr is listed as a senior author on the paper.

Education research 

Artificial intelligence triaging 

A new study finds artificial intelligence is as good as a physician at prioritising which patients need to be seen first in an emergency department (ED). Using anonymised records, researchers at UC San Francisco evaluated how well an AI model was able to extract symptoms from patients’ clinical notes to determine their need to be treated immediately. The researchers tested ChatGPT-4 large language model performance with a sample of 10,000 matched pairs – 20,000 patients in total – that included one patient with a serious condition, such as stroke, and another with a less urgent condition, such as a broken wrist. Given only the patients’ symptoms, the AI was able to identify which ED patient in the pair had a more serious condition 89% of the time.


PET agent for clear cell renal cell cancer

A novel investigational positron emission tomography (PET) imaging agent can rapidly and accurately visualise lesions in clear cell renal cell cancer (ccRCC) patients, according to new research. The results of the study suggest that the agent 68Ga-DPI-4452 is superior to standard CT imaging in the context of ccRCC. It also allows for faster imaging. Further work is needed to assess if this test could improve patient diagnosis, management and outcomes.

Image credit | SPlibrary

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